6 April 2020

International Viewpoint

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International Viewpoint, the monthly English-language magazine of the Fourth International, is a window to radical alternatives world-wide, carrying reports, analysis and debates from all corners of the globe. Correspondents in over 50 countries report on popular struggles, and the debates that are shaping the left of tomorrow.
Updated: 1 hour 23 min ago

“This struggle is historic” - striking railworkers speak

Sat, 01/18/2020 - 14:17

As the strike movement in France continues we republish testimonies from two striking railworkers from the NPA newspaper L'Anticapitaliste.

- IV540 - January 2020 /

Megafires in Australia: in the image of capitalist excess

Fri, 01/17/2020 - 09:31

As of 3 January, the forest “mega-fires” ravaged 60,000 km², the equivalent of twice the size of Belgium. 500 million animals were charred in the disaster, say scientists at the University of Sydney. New Zealand's glaciers are covered in soot. Temperature records have been broken, January and February could exceed 50°C in the shade. Nothing is under control. These fires are out of the ordinary.

- IV540 - January 2020 / ,

Remembering and Forgetting: No to War with Iran!

Thu, 01/16/2020 - 09:14

The criminal negligence of the Iranian regime and military — shooting down a passenger airliner that had just taken off from their own Tehran airport — should immediately remind us of the dozens, if not hundreds of occasions when United States forces have caused the same kind of civilian collateral carnage.

- IV540 - January 2020 / ,

The Lebanese October revolution against sectarian realism and neoliberal authoritarianism:

Wed, 01/15/2020 - 11:43

As the Lebanese revolutionary uprising enters its third month, the ancien régime has already unleashed its counterrevolutionary practices in all its forms. Fear mongering of pre-October 17 sectarian tensions alongside blaming the impending economic collapse on the continuous protests and reviving the spectre of the civil war are rife on Lebanese TV channels as members of the Lebanese ruling class battle to hold on to a sinking structure. Although the momentum is not as prominent as it used to be during the first weeks of the revolution, slogans, chants and demands are witnessing a sharp politicization that opens endless possibilities for class conscious struggles as the anger of the masses are directed at the main perpetrator of the economic crisis, local banks. Mattia Gallo, from Global Project, interviews Elia El Khazen on the recent developments and the “Nationalize the banks” campaign of which he is a member.

- IV540 - January 2020 / ,

A progressive government born under the gun in Spanish state

Tue, 01/14/2020 - 05:28

Amid rising tensions in a badly fragmented parliament (including 10 parliamentary groups and 22 parties), the leader of the Spanish Socialist Workers Party (PSOE), Pedro Sánchez, won a very tight second vote (167 to 165 with 18 abstentions) to be confirmed prime minister of the first coalition government in the history of post-Franco democracy, which has until now rotated between two dominant parties.

- IV540 - January 2020 /

The movement is holding on...but not spreading

Mon, 01/13/2020 - 05:32

Taken as a whole, the current movement against Macron's planned pension reform is now on a par with the three main social movements of recent decades launched in response to pension reform: those of 1995, 2003 and 2010.

- IV540 - January 2020 /

Daniel Bensaïd 25 March 1946 - 12 January 2010

Sun, 01/12/2020 - 16:54

“Daniel was profoundly internationalist. (…) [He] ensured the historical continuity of open, non-dogmatic, revolutionary Marxism and adaptation to the changes of the new era, with the perspective of revolutionary transformation of society always in his sights.”

- 2. News from around the world / ,

An open history: Blanqui and Bensaïd

Sun, 01/12/2020 - 08:42

All thinkers have their father-thinkers; none more so than Daniel Bensaïd. The figures of Charles Péguy, Walter Benjamin and Louis Auguste Blanqui recur throughout his work. In this article, Émile Carmes studies Bensaïd's deep engagement over the years with the work of Blanqui.

- 2. Daniel Bensaïd archive / ,

Was Marx an ecosocialist? A reply to Kohei Saito.

Sun, 01/12/2020 - 07:08

Kohei Saito's book Marx's Ecosocialism is an essential contribution to the current debates on Marxism and the environmental question. What makes Saito's work particularly interesting is that it traces the evolution of Marx's thought from a “productivist” to an “anti-productivist” vision of human development, in particular by incorporating natural limits into perspectives for agriculture. This historical approach allows the author to transcend the quarrels between Marxists who see Marx's ecology as a glass which is empty, half empty, half full or full.

- IV540 - January 2020 /

The Socialist Position on the Latest U.S. Attack on Iran: The Assassination of Suleimani

Sat, 01/11/2020 - 06:16

President Donald Trump has virtually declared war on Iran with the assassination of Maj. Gen. Qassim Suleimani, leader of Iran's elite Quds Force, in an airstrike near Baghdad International Airport. The assassination of Suleimani will very likely lead to war, though it is unclear how such a war will develop and what form it will take. How do American socialists decide our position on this new situation?

- IV540 - January 2020 / ,

Pensions: “We choose to give priority to human beings and the right to a dignified life”

Fri, 01/10/2020 - 12:01

Emmanuel Macron repeated it in his New Year speech: he wants to push through his pension reform. Against all the arguments of common sense, he decides alone. The balance of forces is the only possible language with this government. Strikes and demonstrations will therefore be essential.

- 2. News from around the world /

Australia's dark age of climate catastrophe

Fri, 01/10/2020 - 06:13

It is impossible to find words appropriate to the immensity and horror of Australia's bushfire catastrophe. Day in day out for months on end we've been bombarded with harrowing images and accounts of death and destruction – of roaring walls of flame over 100 metres high; of deadly “fire tornadoes” powerful enough to flip fire trucks; of bushfires creating their own super-cell thunderstorms with lightning strikes sparking new blazes ahead of existing fronts; of giant plumes of smoke turning day into eerie, pitch-dark night; of thousands forced to huddle on beaches and cower on boats as ash and embers rain down on them and their communities burn before their eyes; of convoys of evacuees stuck on roads blocked by flames, while others await evacuation by sea; of whole towns burnt to ashes by fires so intense that no fire fighting force on Earth could stop them.

- IV540 - January 2020 / , ,

Struggling under the flag of solidarity, facing repression, in a fractured country

Thu, 01/09/2020 - 09:53

The student mobilization on 29 November 2019 had a deep echo across Pakistan. Affirming solidarity with all the discriminated and exploited sectors of society, it became a rallying point for a wide range of social and progressive movements in a country and a state undermined by numerous regional, national or religious fractures and by abysmal social inequalities.

- IV540 - January 2020 / ,

Must Labour move right to secure its working-class base?

Wed, 01/08/2020 - 07:55

Phil Hearse argues that the Blairite Right and Lexit Left are drawing all the wrong conclusions from the general election.

- IV540 - January 2020 /

British Conservative Party tacks right

Tue, 01/07/2020 - 09:21

The election of Boris Johnson as Prime Minister and the bitter defeat of the hopes of the Labour left represent a deeper cultural and institutional shift in the politics of the British Conservative and Unionist Party. They are not fools, the entitled gang who head the party, and the election and its aftermath has seen some canny moves that ride the wave of xenophobic reaction harnessed and amplified by the 2016 EU membership referendum.

- IV540 - January 2020 /

We Must Call a Coup a Coup

Mon, 01/06/2020 - 06:35

In November, the Bolivian military forced Evo Morales to step down: the classic definition of a coup. Despite the evidence, some commentators — even on the Left — have failed to identify it for what it was: an elite plot to oust a progressive president whose program of reforms had transformed the lives of many of the country's most excluded people.

- IV540 - January 2020 /

Why we left the Awami Workers Party. Lessons to be learned

Sun, 01/05/2020 - 13:51

Farooq Tariq and other former members of the LPP (Labour Party Pakistan) issued this statement on 5 January 2020.

- IV540 - January 2020 / ,

Oppose U.S. and Iran War by Showing Solidarity with Uprisings in the MENA Region

Sun, 01/05/2020 - 08:20

This statement was issued by the Alliance of Middle Eastern and North African Socialists on 3 January 2020.

- IV540 - January 2020 / , , ,

No war in Iran!

Sat, 01/04/2020 - 09:40

Trump's assassination of Iranian General Oassim Suleimani on Iraqi soil is an escalation of his desire to destroy the Iranian regime. Since he came to office Trump has plotted to pull the U.S. government out of the nuclear agreement signed by several European countries and Iran. Following that he has imposed sanctions that have made the average Iranian civilian's life much more difficult. Given that a quarter of the world's oil passes through the Strait of Hormuz, on Iran's shore, U.S. military maneuvers there also inflamed tensions between Washington and Tehran.

- 2. News from around the world / ,

1995-2003-2010: lessons from three large-scale mobilizations

Sat, 01/04/2020 - 07:36

The French trade-union movement is currently engaged in the longest strike movement for more than 50 years. For almost a month, since 5 December 2019, the strike has been massive in the transport sector (railways and Paris region public transport). The third most-mobilized sector – teachers – returns to work and strike on Monday 6 January after the two-week end-of-year break and it is expected that their strike action will continue.

- IV540 - January 2020 /